Measurements and Shape of the Dead Sea in the Hellenistic and Roman Periods: Confronting Greek and Latin Sources with Modern Physiographical Data

Stephanie E. Binder, Michael Lazar, Emmanuel Nantet

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The Dead Sea is often described by authors in Antiquity. Four of these authors, the first known to provide measurements for the body of water, are addressed here. Their reports, which are a wealthy source of information on the way the ancients grasped their surrounding maritime area, are examined. Considering the measurements obtained scientifically in recent studies concerning the period when the texts were redacted, one might be puzzled by the seeming discrepancy between the ancient and modern sets of data. Unfamiliarity with ancient units of measurement and their meaning, especially their use in a nautical context, may explain some of the confusion. The present paper presents a multi-disciplinary study combining philological, geological and metrological approaches, displays the differences and tries to account for them.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)175-194
Number of pages20
JournalIsrael Exploration Journal
Volume69
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2019

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 Israel Exploration Society. All rights reserved.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Archaeology
  • History
  • Archaeology

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